HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
What's your latest food quest? Get great advice
TELL US

Oakland Business Lunch

uhockey Jul 18, 2011 04:58 PM

Hello,

Visiting the Bay Area in September and while my dinner agenda is nicely planned I'm in town principally for a job interview and part of that process is lunch on the day of my arrival.

Looking for recommendations on a good/great place between Oakland Airport and Concord - someplace relatively quiet where we can sit and talk and also someplace that isn't going to be trying to get us in and out as they are trying to prep for dinner service.

Open to all types of food, but probably nothing too esoteric since I don't know my interviewer's palate.

http://uhockey.blogspot.com

  1. bbulkow Aug 20, 2011 02:12 PM

    Flora.

    1. p
      Pius Avocado III Aug 20, 2011 10:49 AM

      This may be OT but might it not ingratiate yourself with your inquisitors were you to allow them to pick the venue, thus allowing them control over the expense, amongst other things? As you point out, you don't know the tastes of the person you are attempting to win over.

      When I interview people (our offices are in downtown Oakland), I have 2-3 places in mind and allow the candidate to select one.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Pius Avocado III
        m
        ML8000 Aug 20, 2011 02:44 PM

        To me picking the meeting place as the interviewee is a loaded situation since this is about the job, not the food.

        I'd let the interviewer pick because you steer clear of a whole matrix of stuff and you have less stuff to think about. Foremost, if the interviewer picks the place, he or she is likely to be in a better mood and grounded. I wouldn't want to guess on someone else's taste if a job was on the line.

        That said, if you must choose, again I'd pick a safe/corporate type place...it's not unlike your choice of beverages at said lunch.

        1. re: ML8000
          uhockey Aug 20, 2011 02:50 PM

          A) I was told to pick. And I assure you, if an interviewer suggested a chain or somewhere deplorable I'd suggest otherwise. I've refused to eat at celebratory events before (residency awards banquets, etc.)
          B) It is a bit different when the job needs you more than you need that specific job.
          C) Let's not call it "interview," but rather a "getting to know more about you and telling you what we have to offer."

          I'm thankful for the advice offered here.

          http://uhockey.blogspot.com

          1. re: uhockey
            m
            ML8000 Aug 20, 2011 03:06 PM

            If they told you to pick and they need you more and this is a meet and greet...I'd call this a pricing and compatibility test. Best of luck.

      2. Ruth Lafler Aug 20, 2011 10:34 AM

        Reading your actual question, it seems it doesn't have to be in Oakland, but "between Oakland Airport and Concord." Given that, I'd suggest Postino in Lafayette, which I think is perfectly suited to a long business lunch.

        -----
        Postino
        3565 Mt. Diablo Blvd, Lafayette, CA 94549

        1 Reply
        1. re: Ruth Lafler
          uhockey Aug 20, 2011 10:53 AM

          That is a nice looking menu - could work really well, actually.

          http://uhockey.blogspot.com

        2. Cindy Aug 20, 2011 08:16 AM

          Lake Chalet might work well for an interview setting, and there's enough menu choices for all types of eaters.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Cindy
            JasmineG Aug 20, 2011 08:59 AM

            Lake Chalet is lovely, but the food is not. Of the choices here, Wood Tavern has the best food, and if you sit in the window it's not that loud at lunchtime (make the window request). Bocanova is fine, but a little hit or miss to me -- every time I go there, I have at least something that I like a lot and something that I don't like at all.

            -----
            Wood Tavern
            6317 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

            Bocanova
            55 Webster Street, Oakland, CA 94607

          2. m
            ML8000 Aug 19, 2011 04:18 PM

            Any place that's good is likely to be crowded and a bit noisy. A boring corporate/safe, quiet place is where I'd pick. Spenger's, Scott's Seafood would be just that and you can hold a real conversation.

            Might consider Bocanova, also in Jack London Square like Scott's. Nicer, better food but seems safe for a business. Also easy parking in the underground garage.

            -----
            Scott's Seafood
            855 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94301

            Bocanova
            55 Webster Street, Oakland, CA 94607

            1 Reply
            1. re: ML8000
              escargot3 Aug 19, 2011 05:54 PM

              I agree with ML8000 all the way. at Bocanova, you also have the option to sit outside and not be effected by a possibly noisy interior. I think the food is great.

              -----
              Bocanova
              55 Webster Street, Oakland, CA 94607

            2. wolfe Aug 19, 2011 01:50 PM

              Uncle Dougies

              -----
              Uncle Dougie's
              362 17th St, Oakland, CA 94612

              1 Reply
              1. re: wolfe
                h
                hyperbowler Aug 19, 2011 03:45 PM

                Uncle Dougie's is way too casual for a business lunch. Plus, there's nothing worse than dribbling tomato sauce from a hero on your suit!

                -----
                Uncle Dougie's
                362 17th St, Oakland, CA 94612

              2. Robert Lauriston Jul 18, 2011 05:28 PM

                Plum (Coi spinoff). Lunch menu is relatively conventional. I think this is a lunch menu:

                http://www.urbanspoon.com/u/menu/1542...

                Oliveto (upstairs), Bocanova, or Pican are probably all good choices for that purpose.

                -----
                Pican Restaurant
                2295 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

                Oliveto Restaurant
                5655 College Ave, Oakland, CA 94618

                Bocanova
                55 Webster Street, Oakland, CA 94607

                Plum
                2214 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

                8 Replies
                1. re: Robert Lauriston
                  uhockey Aug 19, 2011 01:29 PM

                  Any thoughts on Wood Tavern?

                  and - if the doc I'm interviewing with is more adventurous, how is the volume/atmosphere at Burma Superstar?

                  Thanks.

                  http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                  -----
                  Burma Superstar Restaurant
                  309 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

                  Wood Tavern
                  6317 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

                  1. re: uhockey
                    chefj Aug 19, 2011 02:01 PM

                    Both of those places are loud. Wood Tavern the loudest of the 2. Burma Superstar is loud and in my opinion not all that great when it come as to Burmese food. lots of hype though )-:

                    -----
                    Burma Superstar Restaurant
                    309 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

                    Wood Tavern
                    6317 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

                    1. re: chefj
                      l
                      Leely2 Aug 19, 2011 02:26 PM

                      Agree on Burma Superstar.

                      Is Wood Tavern loud at lunch? I've only had dinner there. We've had work functions at Bocanova in the past. Good food and roomy enough feeling for a biz lunch I would think.

                      -----
                      Burma Superstar Restaurant
                      309 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

                      Wood Tavern
                      6317 College Ave., Oakland, CA 94618

                      Bocanova
                      55 Webster Street, Oakland, CA 94607

                      1. re: Leely2
                        chefj Aug 19, 2011 02:59 PM

                        It's busy so it is loud.

                        1. re: Leely2
                          uhockey Aug 19, 2011 04:09 PM

                          Bocanova looks promising. Thanks.

                          Probably will go with that, Plum, or Pican.

                          http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                          -----
                          Pican Restaurant
                          2295 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

                          Bocanova
                          55 Webster Street, Oakland, CA 94607

                          1. re: uhockey
                            escargot3 Aug 19, 2011 05:52 PM

                            re. Plum: would you really want to sit on a bench -- without a back support -- for a business meeting? especially an interview?

                            1. re: escargot3
                              uhockey Aug 20, 2011 03:29 AM

                              No. I wouldn't. Hence the point of this thread. It was recommended above but your input claerly makes it a less ideal choice.

                              http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                              1. re: uhockey
                                pamf Aug 20, 2011 01:06 PM

                                It is also all communal tables, once again not ideal for an interview.

                  Show Hidden Posts